Stuck At Home With The Car?

March 24th, 2020

Recent global events will in the months ahead lead many Australians to be quarantined at home or laid off from their normal jobs. This confinement might last for a few days or several months and life stuck in your own home can become remarkably boring.

Sitting on the couch watching comedies that weren’t funny the first time you saw them or chatting for an hour via webcam with people who can’t work out the technology are no substitute for doing something productive.

That car sitting in its lonely garage offers a myriad of possibilities.

During future weeks and as this situation evolves, we will be suggesting various ways to use unproductive time to care for and even improve your vehicle (or vehicles).

Starting with some simple tasks, your car’s interior is likely to be one of the grimiest and least healthy places that you can visit. However, most of what you find in there will not be contagious.

Quite likely you can’t remember the last time your car’s interior received more than a cursory vacuum and quick wipe with vinyl cleaner. It needs and deserves a lot more and while you have time to spare you can give it some pampering.

To properly clean a vehicle’s interior the seats need to come out and that’s a task that could be simple or daunting. Older models have metal runners with manual adjusters and bolt directly to the vehicle floor. Consult the Owners Manual for guidance on the location of bolts, especially the sneaky concealed ones.

Removing bolts that have been in place and exposed to the elements can be difficult so use some spray lubricant and be patient. If your seats have electrical adjustment, follow carefully the instructions for removal or leave them in place. Perhaps do try to remove the centre console which will provide better access to the underside of the seat so you can clean the carpets and adjustment mechanism.

If you do manage to remove the seats (front and rear) the accumulation of debris beneath them will be mind-boggling. If you have owned the car for a while it will without doubt reveal familiar objects you thought were lost forever. If you are a relatively new custodian, then the content of that carpet might provide some idea of who – or perhaps what – a previous owner might have been.

A household vacuum with no nozzle is the best way to begin; sucking up years of accumulated dust and grime. Wearing one of those masks you got from the chemist is a good idea.  Once the main body of grunge is gone, attach a crevice tool for digging into dark corners.

Stained automotive carpets can be cleaned using a suitable household cleaner and small brush. Once you have cleaned the floor covering as best you can, treat it with a fabric and upholstery protector to make the job easier in the future.

Future blogs will look further into cleaning, maintaining and improving other areas of your vehicle; inside, outside and around the engine. Between us we will get through this difficult situation and ensure our collective time while laid off or in quarantine passes faster and more productively.

Despite the world coming to a standstill, Enthusiast Insurance will still be there to ensure its clients have a place to turn if their vehicle is damaged or they acquire another one. Visit in the first instance www.enthusiast.com.au and if the answer isn’t immediately apparent, use the 1800 numbers to contact a member of Enthusiast’s helpful Claims or Customer Service staff.

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